Early Years Update 10.06.2021
Email dated 10.06.2021
Welcome to the latest Early Years update email.
Now the summer weather has finally arrived, we do hope you are able to enjoy more time outside with your children. As the country is beginning to enjoy the emergence from some of the Covid restrictions, we would like to remind everyone that it is still vital to continue to follow the Government guidance and the updated local guidance detailed below, to help minimise the spread of the Delta variant. We have been encouraged by the uptake of lateral flow (rapid) testing by our early years communities to date and want to thank everyone who continues to participate. This form of testing is quick, free and helps to pick up positive cases of the virus where people have no symptoms and are highly infectious. By identifying these positive cases early on, we can quickly enable people to self-isolate and cut off the chain of transmission. Alongside vaccination, testing is a vital tool in our arsenal to enable us to recover. Please do share the attached information letter with your families.
The EY sector is one of the unsung heroes of the Covid response and we applaud you all for your hard work and resilience in keeping your families and each other as safe as possible. The final summer term is always one of the busiest as we prepare to wave many of children off to school, and it is amazing to consider that this will be the second year that we do so under Covid restrictions. The Early Years team would like to thank you all for the wonderful support and care that you provide for children and families embarking on this important milestone in transitioning to school together.
The Early Years sector is also busy implementing the EYFS Reforms and we hope you all had a chance to attend one of the recent Reforms briefings. The Bristol Early Years website has links to all the relevant documents slides and the briefing slides can be downloaded using the password REFORMS21 from here also. Although implementing change can sometimes seem daunting, we would like to reassure you that the Bristol Early Years team will be working alongside you with a range of resources and support over the coming months. Do look out for the latest Network CPD offer for this term as well as child development CPD to support the Reforms in the Autumn and contact your lead teacher for information.
The Early Years Team
Public Health Covid Update for Early Years Settings
In Bristol, we are currently dealing with an increased level of cases of COVID-19 in our schools, which includes a number of cases of the Delta variant, first identified in India (VOC-21APR-02, lineage B.1617). National Public Health guidance has not changed; however, we encourage early years, schools and families to be extra vigilant during this time.
In response to this increase in infection rates, BCC and Public Health Bristol are taking great care to track, trace and contain infection in line with our Local Outbreak Management Plan and national public health guidance, to make sure there is no further additional risk to the wider community. We are responding to an ever-evolving situation which means our Public Health teams must act quickly, effectively and flexibly. It is so important at this time of gradual ‘unlocking’ and with a new variant in circulation, that we encourage our early years and school communities across the city to follow these key steps:
The main symptoms of COVID-19 are:
About 1 in 3 people with COVID-19 do not have symptoms but can still infect others. This is why lateral flow (rapid) testing is very important.
For case notifications please continue to email then in through the usual route firstname.lastname@example.org
Financial Support for Covid
The Government has put in place a number of funding and financial measures to support organisations – both public and private – during the COVID-19 pandemic. These are intended to be temporary, timely and targeted, to support public services, people, and businesses through this period of disruption. The guidance sets out the financial support that is available for different types of education, early years and children’s social care providers in England and can be accessed here:
The updated EYFS will become statutory from 1st September 2021.
Following the EYFS reforms briefings at the end of May, a useful document of Frequently Asked Questions has been compiled and is attached to help settings with planning and implementation. Please read this carefully and look out for further supporting CPD in the Autumn term.
Free Network CPD
The Network training offer for term 6 is now out with a great range of sessions to support staff wellbeing, outdoor learning, leadership, and practice.
Please contact your Lead teacher for your locality offer.
Wellbeing webinars for all Bristol parents & carers of children
Bristol Educational Psychology Service would like to invite all Bristol parents and carers to attend a series of wellbeing webinars. These free, online, bitesize sessions are delivered live by an experienced psychologist and will feature a mix of useful content, engaging activities and practical tips and techniques to take away. Please consider including the attached flyer in your newsletters to parents.
The sessions are standalone and will be recorded for those who are unable to attend. >>> Click dates to book your free place <<<
The Bristol Standard team has been very busy over the last few months. The digitalisation project has been moving swiftly along and the team has been redesigning our certificates and booklets. Online validation continues to work well and the team has been amazed at the quality of the submissions seen in the last year. Every submission has got through validation and the team reports they have felt very privileged to read about what everyone has done and how they have adapted during the pandemic. Many more settings have decided to do The Bristol Standard during the pandemic year keeping mentors very busy. It has been reassuring for practitioners to hold onto the Bristol Standard framework and the online folders have helped everyone to stay connected during challenging times.
The newsletter and flyer for the next two meetings are attached to this email.
Network meetings in June:
Weds 16th June The Bristol Standard online new submission forms
Weds 23rd June repeat of above
Meetings for next academic year for your diary:
Weds 29th September TBSO plus introduction to BS for new people
Weds 24th November Dimension 4 + the new Outdoor Audit (NB to attend)
Weds 12th January Dimension 3 The Reflective Practitioner
Weds 2nd March Dimension 8 Equality Diversity and Inclusion
Weds 15th June Dimension 9 Partnership with Parents and the Community
Survey of Childcare and Early Years Providers 2021
The Department for Education (DfE) is contacting some early years providers to invite them to complete a survey. We would like to confirm that this contact is part of the Survey of Childcare and Early Years Providers 2021 and is a legitimate request that has been issued on behalf of the Department for Education. This research is very important to the Department and providers’ participation would be extremely valuable but is entirely voluntary.
When contacting school-based and group-based providers the DfE does aim to limit calls to business hours unless an appointment outside of those times has been agreed, but this hasn’t always been the experience of some settings. If interviewers do call at a time that is not convenient for you, they are happy to call back at a time that suits you, so please do request this if you are contacted.
Families Local Offer and Advice (FLORA)
Free Employability Training for Families